Interesting story over on BusinessWeek called “Videoconferencing Gets Real” (although to me it should be “Videoconferencing Gets Virtually Real”). From the article (Link):
“Because the space is a common space in terms of its design, it eliminates the distance, it eliminates the barriers between us from an architectural point of view. I’m not looking at your place, and you’re not looking at my place — it’s us now being together in the same space,” explains Mark Gorzynski, HP’s chief scientist for Halo. The result isn’t an improvement in videoconferencing, but a complete shift: the nearly seamless melding of a half-virtual, half-physical space.
Architecturally, rather than accept the differences between locations, the Halo room is designed to smooth them over. In the process, it’s a step away from how architecture has been conceived for thousands of years. Rather than existing in a specific place, the half-physical half-virtual Halo room exists in space. With the Halo room, architecture itself becomes a communications technology.
Enjoy the idea. Because after you see the price tag the halo goes away.